Disneyland Resort held the grand opening of their first Marvel-themed attraction Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout last week. Something new has popped up outside the attraction — an Avengershatch of unknown origin. What does it mean?
The first person I saw online to mention the Avengers hatch was Vice President & Executive Editor Ryan Penagos (aka Agent M), who was alerted to the strange artifact outside Taneleer Tivan’s fortress by Marvel Themed Entertainment Creative Director Brian Crosby. It’s worth noting that Crosby appeared at a Making of Mission Breakout panel during the premiere event, and made the following statement:
“There are nods in this attraction to other things we are doing around the world. In true Marvel fashion, hashtag it’s all connected, there are nods to the Iron Man Experience in Hong Kong, there are nods to the Marvel Superhero Academy on the Disney Cruise Ship. It’s all connected guys. So we encourage you to be good fans and go on the interwebs and find all the clues and connect it all. That’s the fun, it’s all part of the same universe. And we’re just getting started.”
Is it possible that the Avengers hatch is just a nod to Superhero Academy on the Cruise Ships or the Iron Man Experience in Hong Kong? Remember, even though Mission: Breakout has many similarities to the MCU, and hints at the future of the MCU, it supposedly takes place in a different universe. Guardians series director James Gunn has explained that it is the start of the Marvel Theme Park Universe (MTPU). And it seems like all of the themed attractions at Disney Parks and Experiences will be connected in some way.
Hazmat Suited Workers: Is SHIELD Up To Something?
One thing we (and many other news outlets) appeared to miss at the Mission: Breakout grand opening celebration was a group of mysterious workers in hazmat suits (like the ones seen in Arrival above) working around the area where the hatch now appears. The only recorded reference to the situation I found on DigitalLA:
And in fact, there is even some indication of what’s coming in the future. Behind the Mission Breakout tower at the opening party, we noticed two guys in orange hazmat suits entering a tented area. We tried to go check it out, but these two security guards in black uniforms with the Avengers logo said we could not go back there. A black Jeep with an Avengers logo was also parked behind a building. It looked like the same black Avengers Jeeps that Black Widow and Hawkeye were taking photos by.
MiceChat mentioned the fact that the mysterious workers went unnoticed by the majority of press attending the event:
While those on-ride videos became Internet sensations accidentally, one element of the media events that fell totally flat was the faux hazmat scene themed to the Avengers that was artfully staged just past the ride near the Hollywood trolley station. No one attending the Thursday media party or the Friday $150 preview party cared about it, and Burbank’s plan for that hazmat scene to “go viral” failed completely. The goal was to give people a big hint about the new Avengers high tech coaster E Ticket now greenlit for the expansion pad just beyond the trolley station, which is an attraction Miceage Updates have been mentioning for over a year. When you try hard to make something go viral, it usually fails. The folks at those events were there to see the Guardians of the Galaxy, not the Avengers.
And MiceChat is probably dead on in their assessment here as the two linked articles above are the only evidence I can find on the entire internet that a Hazmat scene existed. I can’t even find photos.
The Best Guess: Disney Is Teasing The Marvel Themed Land Coming To DCA
But if I were to guess what this Avengers hatch means, it would be the hint of what is coming to Disney California Adventure. When the Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout attraction was announced at Comic Con 2016, Walt Disney Imagineering executive Joe Rhode hinted at the future:
“[The Ride] will be the first of a whole new universe in Disney California Adventure. All of this is happening as we speak. As things emerge and as things develop, I’ll be back to tell you about all the things that are going to happen as we go forward and make this really really cool and really wonderful addition to Disney California Adventure.”
A Marvel themed land had long been rumored for DCA, with the leaked information claiming that WDI wanted to build an E-Ticket Hybrid Roller Coaster Dark Ride attraction (think what Universal Studios did with Harry Potter and Escape From Gringotts) right next to Tower of Terror. Now, remember that Avengers hatch sits on the right side of the Collector’s fortress, right where the Marvel expansion has long been rumored.
Recent Teases of DCA’s Marvel Land
At the grand opening of Mission: Breakout last week, Disney Parks chairman Bob Chapek teased further that “this is just the beginning of what will become an even bigger superhero presence at Disney California Adventure, and with the strong partnership between Marvel and Walt Disney Imagineering, we’re very excited about what is to come. And it’s sure to please Marvel fans hungry for more magic at Disney Parks.”
While talking at a panel during the Mission Breakout premiere event, Joe Rohde had the following to say about the future of Marvel at Disney California Adventure:
“So, you have to start one day. If you’re going to do something, somewhere you start. We are starting. This is the beginning of the opening of a world of things that are going to happen. And the promise of that world is embodied in this project. It’s embodied in its quality, embodied in its fun, embodied in its unexpectedness. We promise you that the world that is coming will be as much fun as the fun that you had with what we’ve done today. But there will definitely be more.”
If I were to guess, I would think that Walt Disney Imagineering may officially announce Marvel Land at D23 Expo in July 2017. But don’t expect it to be called Marvel Land or Marvel Universe as the company’s Universal Studios contracts apparently prevent them in using the Marvel brand in any advertising for Disney Parks, even west of the Mississippi – notice Disney California Adventure’s “Summer of Superheroes” campaign doesn’t feature the Marvel brand/trademark.